The early weeks of pregnancy are fragile—and confusing. Here, the answers to your questions.
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Kristen Olberz, R.N., C.H., H.B.C.E., is a labor and delivery nurse at Portland Providence Medical Center in Portland, Ore. and a certified HypnoBirthing educator; out of the more than 1,500 births she has witnessed, approximately 300 have been HypnoBirths. Olberz was drawn to this particular method because “It supports moms being okay with what’s going on during labor, being fully supported by staff and loved ones, feeling safe and empowered.” The experience of birth is raw and sacred, says Olberz, and those aspects cannot be fully realized and appreciated when terror and chaos dominate.
The main difference Olberz notes with families who choose HypnoBirthing over other methods (or no childbirth education): “They enter labor with tangible tools and working knowledge of what their body can do. Even when things take a turn [and natural birth isn’t possible], my wish is that they feel prepared and able to meet those turns with grace.” In other words, if a medical intervention does become necessary, mom and dad can still use the relaxation and comfort techniques that HypnoBirthing teaches to stay calm and present during a time that may become emotionally difficult.
“The mothers tend to exude a quiet strength,” says Kim Wildner, a certified HynoBirthing educator in Appleton and Fond-du-Lac, Wis. and author of Mother's Intention: How Belief Shapes Birth (Intuitu LLC, Second Edition 2012). “The fathers tend to provide loving support that creates quite an intimate and relaxed birthing experience.” Wildner sought out HypnoBirthing certification after seeing a TV segment on it. “I had been teaching childbirth classes for almost 10 years; however, I was not seeing the types of relaxed, more comfortable births that I saw in the video. Once I learned more about the mind/body connection, I began seeing those types of births as well, and my entire birthing paradigm shifted.”